Sometimes it’s difficult, even impossible, to talk about negative sexual experiences. About the times when our boundaries were violated, but we didn’t say anything. About times when we violated others without realizing it. About times when we violated ourselves. Initiating an honest conversation about sex and consent is scary. Reactions can be cold or even hostile towards those who try. Because of this, many people hold their tongue and put a lid on their thoughts – but that doesn’t make the thoughts go away.
In connection to a conversation regarding the media coverage of the Assange case, Swedish journalist Johanna Koljonen started to tweet, openly and intimately, about her own experiences of drawing lines and negotiating gray areas in sexual situations. Hundreds followed Koljonen’s example on Twitter under the hashtag #prataomdet (”#talkaboutit”). As a result of this, several Swedish magazines, newspapers and other media outlets are publishing pieces on the subject. In a matter of days international media, such as The Guardian, Die Welt, BBC World Service, Norway’s Dagbladet, Finland’s Helsingin Sanomat, and others have followed.
We need a language for sex that isn’t stifled by shame, we need to think about our boundaries as well as others’. Something is going to change. We are going to dare to #talkaboutit.
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